Options for Making the Short Greek Vest

The pattern, 126 Vests from Greece and Poland, provides amazing detail about how to sew and create traditional long and short Greek vests as well as a typical Polish vest.  The pattern provides authentic embellishment designs and instructions for creating appliques, as well as adding braid, soutache, sequins, and beading.  You can create something very traditional or very modern - whatever you make will be unique and beautiful.

I have taken two approaches to making the short Greek vest when sewing up two samples in the last few weeks.  First of all, I love the short Greek vest because of its simplicity - three pattern pieces, super quick to sew, and lots of options for embellishment, and the cut is very cute.  

For my first sample, I wanted to add some trim to make it a bit more "folkwear".  I used a braided trim, embroidered ribbons, and hand-made bias binding.  The Greek vests can be finished with fold-over braid or bias binding, and I liked this option because it adds a bit more color to the vest.

layout of black fabric pieces for 126 Vests of Greece and Poland, short Greek vest, with trim of embroidered ribbon, bias tape, and braid.

I used traditional black fabric (this was a woven wool-blend remnant I had in my stash and I would recommend a tighter woven fabric than this one).  I laid out my trims on the pieces to see how much detail I wanted and how I wanted them arranged, then I pinned them down and sewed them into place.  Even with the extra machine-sewing to add these trims, this vest was very quick to make.  Making the bias tape took just as long as making the vest.  I'll do a tutorial on how to make a ton of bias tape all at once - this technique is also taught in this pattern.  

Woman standing in front of wooden doors wearing a black short Greek vest with red and blue trim.
Woman standing sideways in front of wooden doors wearing black short Greek vest with red and blue trim.


I then decided to make a more modern (and quick and dirty) version of this vest to wear in the office this winter.  The lovely thing about a vest is that it can keep you warm while leaving your arms free to move.  I get cold in the office in the winter (because of my eco-friendly habit of keeping the thermostat pretty low).  I often have to wear a jacket.  But, I thought a vest would actually be better to let my arms move more freely when typing, maneuvering patterns, measuring, and sewing.  And, I had a remnant of the beautiful Merchant & Mills jacquard fabric.  So, I cut the vest, and since this is a fabric that ravels terribly, I decided to just serge all my edges to finish them and sew the vest up quickly.  Making this version took less than an hour - cutting to finished sewing.  It definitely could be made more beautiful by the addition of some Liberty of London bias binding (that's my idea anyway), but for now, this is perfect for keeping me warm at the office.  And, I love the fabric and cut of the vest!

 woman standing in front of a wooden door wearing a short grey vest and blue shirt

So, take a look at this vest pattern!  It is a lot of fun, and there are tons of options for making the three vests in the pattern.  And, the pattern is now available in larger sizes (XS-2XL) and as a PDF pattern.  

What would you make?  What embellishments would you use?  What unique take do you have for one of these vests?  We love to see what you  make! 

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